A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

COVID reverses two-week trend, now an increase in cases, deaths, hospitalizations, and 20% positivity

By Tom Latek
Kentucky Today

New cases of COVID-19 in Kentucky, as well as the number of deaths and other metrics, reversed a two-week trend of reductions, according to the Department for Public Health’s weekly report, issued this week.

There were 14,312 new cases reported during the period ending Sunday, Aug. 28, an increase of 1,931 from 12,381 during the previous week. Forty-six of Kentucky’s 120 counties had more than 100 cases each, up from 37 a week ago. Since the first case of COVID was reported March 2020, there have now been 1,536,444 cases in the state.

The 10 counties with the highest number of new cases last week were: Jefferson with 1,880, Fayette 791, Warren 571, Hardin 541, Laurel 369, Harlan 296, Madison 292, Hopkins 288, Daviess 272, and Kenton had 270.

Kentucky’s positivity rate, which measures the number of vases from all tests performed, except those with home kits, has topped the 20% in the last report, and now stands at 20.04%. That is an increase of more than a full percent from last week’s 18.96%, and continues the trend of weekly increases this month, including the 17.89% recorded on August 1, and the 15.75% in early July.

The number of COVID-related deaths for the week ending on Sunday was 76. Two weeks ago, it was also 76, but dipped to 63 last week. The pandemic total has now reached 16,679.

Kentucky’s COVID hospital census also saw an increase from last week, in this latest report. There are now 621 people hospitalized, an increase of 51. Of them, 104 are in the ICU, up 28, and 28 are on a ventilator, two more than the previous report.

The Community Levels map breaks down the COVID level by county, with green for low, yellow for medium and red for high levels, which the CDC says is designed to help individuals and communities decide which prevention actions to take based on hospitalizations and cases.

The most recent map, released Aug. 26, has 74 red counties, 36 yellow and 10 in the green.  The Aug. 19 map had 73 red, 38 yellow and nine green counties. Going back to July 29, there were 80 red counties, and 40 were yellow with no green counties.

For more details and guidance, based on your county’s community level, go to the state’s COVID-19 website.

The federal government has announced that the program where free COVID-19 test kits are mailed to your home ends on Friday, due to a lack of continued Congressional funding. However, you can still order them now, if you have not already received your full allotment, at https://www.covid.gov/tests.

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